Dear Praying Friends:
‘For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord’ – Luke 2 v 11.
A very happy Christmas to you, and we pray you will know God’s presence and help as 2013 is almost here.
Many people today have different concepts as to what the message of Christmas is all about. For us as be-lievers, we remember the birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Thank you for your continued support in prayer, fellowship, letters, ‘e-mails’or phone calls.
For some we enjoyed you visiting us in our home. In the middle of October, we heard that Rosemary’s brother who lives out in Western Canada was diagnosed with cancer in his liver. Rosemary hasn’t seen him for many years. The Lord overruled and she spent just over 1 week with him and his family in Edmonton. It gave her opportunities to share of the Saviour in her chats with him, and we pray that Pat will think seriously of his need of the Saviour.
On her way back to Dub-lin, she stopped for almost 1 week in Ontario to visit with her sisters and encourage them in the Lord Jesus. Some of you prayed particularly for us in the small Assembly we attend here in Dublin. In a 2 week period at the end of the Summer, we faced 2 tragedies which came as a great blow to us all. During the period since, we have known the Lord’s strength and comfort, which He alone can give, and continues to give.
The Sunday evening Bible Studies have gone well in the Assembly over the past 2 months. Overrall not so many people have come each week, but there has been blessing in the studies around the tables. Some who have been in the past returned for this series.
On 9th December there will be a Carol Service, and invitations will be going out shortly. Also we plan to distribute almost 1000 Gospel calendars among contacts and in some of the homes around the Assembly in the next few weeks.
In the early part of 2013, we are planning on having 1 – offs on some Sunday evenings, which we trust will encourage people to come. Recently we had a special children’s service on a Sunday morning. Colin used the sketchboard to get the message across etc, and we had a lovely lunch afterwards to encourage the fellowship among us. The ladies work on a Wednesday morning in the Assembly continues to encourage.
In the monthly bible studies, Joshua is being studied, and it good seeing some outside ladies coming along. Of course the monthly Coffee mornings take place, and on 1 occasion recently the ladies prepared the Shoe boxes to send gifts to needy children in different parts of the world through the work of Team Hope (an Irish Christian charity). These times around the tables making crafts etc help in conversations with these ladies. Please pray for the message which is given each month, and that these older ladies will be touched by the Gospel. The ladies will have a Christmas programme on 12th December, and we pray many ladies will come along.
In the Assembly the men and women have met separately at times to promote a deeper fellowship among us. The ladies will share breakfast together, and follow this up with a bible study and a time to pray for the issues which concern them. Recently the men spent an evening helping in decorating some new premises the Dub-lin Christian Mission was using to reach out to the homeless.
The ladies bible study up in our area on a Wednesday evening continues to be a blessing to all those who attend. Usually around 12 ladies come each time, and currently are studying Matthew. For some, they have been believers for some considerable time. For others, they are beginning to discover the great truths of the Bible, as they have studied in recent months. Learning and sharing the Bible helps the ladies to grow and gel together.
Rosemary comes home each week, rejoicing in the blessing the studies have been to these ladies. We continue to rejoice in the blessing that is coming through Colin teaching ‘Bible Explorer’ in local Pri-mary Schools here in SW Dublin. This is his 15th year of teaching this programme.
During the current School year from September through to June, 22 Schools will be running with this programme, and Colin will be teaching over 50 programmes. Each programme lasts for 5 weeks, 1 hour per week. For just over 1 week in late August, Colin was able to go on a Walking Study Tour in Israel with other people who teach the same programme in the UK. Many pictures were taken, and Colin has been able to add some of these into his powerpoint presentations in the classroom. Many children talk of how these pictures help them to understand what they are learning.
There is nothing more exciting than seeing boys and girls get excited a-bout God’s Word. This is where you play a part, as you pray for freshness in each lesson, to make the Bible alive and live. Sometimes the same lesson may be taught at least 10 times per week in different Schools.
Some of you were praying for us in our involvement in the Northfield Bible Weeks programme for 2 weeks in mid July up in Newcastle, Co. Down. There was blessing in the main tent meetings each day. Our ministry was running 2 weeks of children’s meetings on 2 local caravan parks. There was a good team of young people who helped us each day on a rota basis. Colin used the sketchboard each time to get the Gospel across to the children in a simple way, and we praise the Lord that 5 children professed to be saved. Some afternoons Colin used the sketchboard on the seafront. It was good seeing people stop to listen to the message, and we pray people were challenged by what they heard. On a number of evenings after the tent had finished, Colin took his turn in preaching on the seafront to those who were passing.
We trust you are keeping well, and being encouraged in your service for the Lord. Thank you again for your continued support. We pray the news given will help you in your praying for us in our ministry for the Lord.
We pray you will know God’s direction and blessing in your service for Him during 2013.
Yours in Him, Colin & Rosemary Sheldon